Thursday, June 30, 2016

Botanical Garden of the Ozarks

Yesterday we ventured out from our friends' home to explore the botanical garden. It was suitably hot and humid to keep us reminded that we were, indeed, in the South in the summer. Sitting on this cattle ranch in the northwest corner of Arkansas, 30 minutes south of Missouri and 20 minutes east of Oklahoma, puts us in a beautiful neck of the woods.

I have a few images for you to enjoy today, but, alas, I failed to pay attention to all the plant names so you only get half of a presentation - all the pretty with none of the education - kind of like it felt some of you lectures used to be (maybe that was really none of the pretty and none of the education?!).

The botanical gardens were an interesting place. Laid out in a rough circle around a grassy meadow, it was both a place to enjoy the native plants and a place to host events. Event hosting is what is done to keep the doors open to see the plants. Our first stop was at the Japanese Garden. It was not terribly Japanese, although it was nice. The water plants were in bloom and the small rock garden was pleasant.

We saw lots of coneflowers (see I do know a little bit!) and most were hosting a nectar feeding pollinator of some sort. This one has what looks to be a moth of some sort (but only a little bit) who is using his/her/its proboscis to probe for the goodness deep in the flower.

There was also a butterfly habitat - a screened-in building with the right sorts of plants for feeding and hosting them. With the closed enclosure, they are assured of always having some butterflies present, at least in season.

And the way to keep the butterflies coming is to "breed them" by being careful to preserve the eggs. As you see above the eggs are stuck to side of the plant. These will be future entertainers in the enclosure when the hoards of two-year-olds flock in to visit.

Finally, we have the Rising Sun Redbud. The tips of the the limbs each fade to golden red color in imitation of the morning tint.

We had a great day out and about. It even included a stop at Lowe's. I mean, how could a day be better than that?